Court documents: Phoenix officer placed on life support, was shot 8 times

Dec 15, 2021, 10:08 AM | Updated: 11:19 am

Officer Tyler Moldovan (Phoenix Police Department Photo), left, and Essa Williams (Maricopa County ...

Officer Tyler Moldovan (Phoenix Police Department Photo), left, and Essa Williams (Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)

(Maricopa County Sheriff's Office Photo)

PHOENIX – Phoenix Police Officer Tyler Moldovan was placed on life support after getting shot eight times early Tuesday, including once in the head, according to court documents.

The suspect, Essa Kolareh Eugene Williams, allegedly continued shooting at Moldovan after he was already on the ground at an apartment complex near Camelback Road and 15th Avenue, according to the probable cause statement.

Williams allegedly dropped the 9MM handgun used in the shooting and tried to pull Moldovan’s firearm from the officer’s holster while other officers converged.

After officers detained him, the suspect allegedly attempted to get away multiple times.

Moldovan, 22, was unresponsive when his colleagues came to his aid. Under the section for reasons the defendant might flee, the booking form says the officer isn’t expected to survive.

Moldovan was shot before dawn Tuesday as officers searched for the driver of one of several cars reportedly driving erratically nearby.

Williams has nine prior felony convictions, including two for armed robbery, prosecutor John Schneider said at a court hearing Tuesday night.

“He’s heard on body camera before the crimes occurred, saying something like he was going back to jail,” Schneider said. “A short time later he shot at police presumably to avoid any apprehension.”

The probable cause statement says Williams was on probation for car theft.

He was booked on one count each of attempted first-degree murder of a law enforcement officer, prohibited weapon possession, resisting arrest and aggravated assault of an officer.

A judge ordered him held on a $3 million cash bond.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

We want to hear from you.

Have a story idea or tip? Pass it along to the KTAR News team here.

Arizona News

Human trafficking sting in Scottsdale leads to 42 arrests...

42 people arrested during human trafficking operation in Scottsdale

Forty-two people were arrested during a two-day operation targeting human trafficking in Scottsdale, according to authorities.

6 hours ago

Man facing charges for alleged drug trafficking in 2018-19...

Mexican drug trafficker extradited, to face charges in Arizona court

A Mexican national was extradited from his home country and will face charges for alleged drug trafficking in an Arizona court, authorities announced Wednesday.

8 hours ago

Arizona rancher Jim Chilton and his wife Sue Chilton speaks on stage  on the third day of the Repub...

3 Arizonans speak at Day 3 of Republican National Convention

Arizona rancher Jim Chilton and his wife and businessman David Lara spoke at the third day of the Republican National Convention.

9 hours ago

FILE - Doug Emhoff, the husband of Vice President Kamala Harris, speaks during a roundtable discuss...

Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff to campaign in Arizona this week

Second Gentleman Doug Emhoff will campaign in Tempe in an effort to push improvement of public transportation.

11 hours ago

After a mountain lion had wandered onto the campus of the Tucson Medical Center on Friday, it was r...

Wildlife officials relocate mountain lion caught on Arizona hospital campus

After a mountain lion roamed the campus of the Tucson medical center on Friday, it was safely released into the wild on Saturday.

13 hours ago

Follow @KTAR923...

Sponsored Content by Sanderson Ford

3 storylines to get you revved up for the 2024 Arizona Cardinals

Arizona Cardinals training camp is just a couple weeks away starting on July 25, and Sanderson Ford is revved up and ready to go.

Sponsored Articles


Sanderson Ford

3 new rides for 3 new road trips in Arizona

It's time for the Sanderson Ford Memorial Day sale with the Mighty Fine 69 Anniversary, as Sanderson Ford turned 69 years old in May.


Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Beat the heat, ensure your AC unit is summer-ready

With temperatures starting to rise across the Valley, now is a great time to be sure your AC unit is ready to withstand the sweltering summer heat.



Desert Institute for Spine Care is the place for weekend warriors to fix their back pain

Spring has sprung and nothing is better than March in Arizona. The temperatures are perfect and with the beautiful weather, Arizona has become a hotbed for hikers, runners, golfers, pickleball players and all types of weekend warriors.

Court documents: Phoenix officer placed on life support, was shot 8 times